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Voters view Cunliffe as negative leader

Wednesday 11 Sep 2013 6:03 p.m.

David Cunliffe has the momentum in the Labour leadership race, but a 3 News special poll shows he's also leading the way in voters' minds when it comes to traits like talking down to people.

He won't be happy with a poll showing he is perceived as having more style than substance.

  • David Cunliffe - 25.8 percent
  • Grant Robertson - 13.9 percent
  • Shane Jones - 13 percent
  • Don't know - 47.3 percent

And the pollsters believe he talks down to people.

  • David Cunliffe - 30.7 percent
  • Shane Jones - 13.0 percent
  • Grant Robertson - 7.9 percent
  • Don't know - 48.4 percent

He also failed the honesty test, while Shane Jones - perhaps unsurprisingly - was rated most honest.

  • Shane Jones - 17.3 percent
  • Grant Robertson - 16.3 percent
  • David Cunliffe - 8.6 percent
  • Don't know - 57.8 percent

It's those negative traits the Labour MPs who dislike Mr Cunliffe point to. But the problem for his detractors is he comes out on top in leadership traits like understanding the economy by a long way.

  • David Cunliffe - 22.4 percent
  • Grant Robertson - 12.4 percent
  • Shane Jones - 12.1 percent
  • Don't know - 53.1 percent

And he is also seen as good in a crisis - another good trait.

  • David Cunliffe - 21.2 percent
  • Shane Jones - 16.1 percent
  • Grant Robertson - 15.1 percent
  • Don't know - 47.6 percent

But the poll shows that in each question, about half of respondents didn't know about the candidates, so whoever wins still has a lot of work to get known.

The "anyone but Cunliffe" club is now in overdrive. There are at least 15 MPs out of 34 who truly can't stand him. Come the decision on Sunday, that may make life really difficult for them.

3 News

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